Slow going

Thread starter #41
"Sitting here, listening to the rain on the porch roof, looking at the Sunfish still sitting on the trailer. Brought it up to the bay on Monday and have not got it in the water yet. Tuesday was whitecaps and rain, not a good day as water temp is still cold (high 50's, low 60's?). Not ready for a cold bath yet. Rain every day since. Took Harken rachett block off when I put boat away last fall-thought it was here at the RV-but can't find it-must be home (2 1/2 hours away). Wonder what kind of sailing summer this wil be. Hope others are having better conditions to get sailing. Mid June and not in the water yet"

Well, that was June 20th, 2009, and now it is June 28th, 2010, so where are we now? Well, sitting in the rain at Little Sodus Bay, in the RV. Seems somethings never change, even though it is the start of a new sailing season. The Sunfish is not on the trailer here, but the Harken block is, right in the car where I put it last fall when the Sunfish came out of the water. Where is the Sunfish? Home, 2 1/2 hours away. But that was planned, as, per one of my 'to do's' from last year was to get the Petrel SB12 in the water. So the Petrel is on the trailer. Which way will we go? Not sure. If I can get the Petrel up and going, I may 'dry sail' her this year and put the Sunfish on the skid, but if the skid will hold the Petrel, and if the Petrel does not sink, the Sunfish may have the summer off.
Yesterday was a fun day. The wife and I went to Sodus Bay for the afternoon and went to the park on the point, near the channel. We must have gotten there just after some races finished as a large number of boats were heading into the bay from lake Ontario. They approached flying their Spinakers (sp) and were droping them as they got to the channel. several of the boats were in, what looked like, the 30' range. They were carrying crews of 7 or 8. It was fun to watch them hustle aboout on the foredeck, packing the spinakers and in some cases the mains. Others were tying the mains on the booms. Must of done this a lot, as even with the choppy water in the channel from power boats going by, they scampered back and forth with out a misstep.
Wednesday starts the concerts at Breitback Park in Oswego, and, if true to form, the Oswego Yacht club will be racing out on the Lake. Wednesday is to be cool, high 63.
So summer has started, it is good to be back. Hope the Summer brings fair winds to all.
Thread starter #42
Well, have had time to work on the Petrel. Not sure when we will take her out for her re-introduction to the waters, as she has not been sailed in 14 years. The last time I can remember sailing her was in 1996. She is a 'sleek' 12 footer of Phillip Rhodes design and constructed of aluminum in Toronto Canada by Aluminum Goods of Canada. She is number 1040, or as some dub her, "The IRS Express". Not sure how many Petrel SB 12's were produced, I have seen a picture of one with a Sail number in the 1500's. Guess they are still popular as a trainer in some sailing schools in Canada. Hope to get some pictures of her under way. She is a strange litttle boat, with an oversized jib and a loose footed main. Almost like having 2 jibs with one on a whisker pole.
As you can see by the pictures, she has quite a curve up to the transom, which makes it hard to drain her when on the trailer.


Thread starter #43
Made it to the concert Wednesday and it looked like the Oswego Yacht Club was out in full force, with several boats huddled on what looked to be the starting line for a race. Huddled they stayed, as there was not a wisp of breeze. We have been hit with a heatwave and not even a 'sea breeze' was around. It did not take long for the boats to return to the marina under power. Disappointing, but there is always next week.
The Petrel has had several joourneys, all on the trailer, but not in the water yet. Took her to the service station to get the trailer inspected. While she was there a couple admired her and I was quick to tell her story (one of only two aluminum classes built in her size, the other being the Grunman Flyer) The couple sail a Snipe and their daughter is taking lessons in an Opti. So, sailing is still alive for the little ones.
Sunday marked the boat parade in Fair Haven. Only one boat 'under sail', a Snark. All the big sailboats were under power, except a DaySailor which was being towed.
Next week it is to get cooler, maybe the Petrel will be under way, not wanting to sail in a aluminum boat in 90 plus heat we have now.
Thread starter #44
Well, it is July 12th, a nice wind from the south, not a 'flag flapper' but steady and no prospect of sailing. If the Sunfish was here I think I would be out enjoying the day sailing. Monday morning, not a lot of boat traffic on the bay, Ideal! But it is not to be, as either because of a 'bad decision' or 'unrealsitic expectations', I sit here with the Petrel on a trailer and no way to get sailing. I knew rigging the Petrel would be a problem alone, but I, it seems, falsly rationalized it would not be a problem I could not solve. I thought I would be able to step the mast and be able to keep the boat rigged for the summer. Has not happened. The plan was to keep the boat on the trailer at a location near the public launch, but now I find the owner of the small marina next to the launch does not to rent space for storing boats in that lot. The next lot down, where power boats are stored is not a choice as there are powerlines crossing the street between the lot and the boat launch. Not enough clearence for my mast. Plan 2 was to put the boat on the Sunfish skid at the waters edge. Now the water has come up and the incline of the skid, and the deepness of the Petrel bow, make it impossible to bring the Petrel up on the skid. Of course there was a plan 3, plan 3 was to go to the ramp with someone to help me rig the boat. I guess I could trail the boat to the launch and wait for someone to show up, but it is Monday, and the bay is pretty deserted. Now I remember what makes the Sunfish such a great boat.
Thread starter #45
We have rain falling gently on the roof of the RV and the radar shows more storms moving along the shore of Lake Ontario, so it looks like it will be a quiet day on the bay. Yesterday a couple of small boats were out from the Fair Haven YC, looked like they were giving sailing lessons. On Wednesday morning while heading west on 104 I past 3 or 4 cars towing trailers with racks of Opti's on them. Must have been a total of 20 or more boats. Wonder if they had a race somewhere.
Wednesday night is a race night at Oswego YC and the wind on Lake Ontario was strong. The flag at Breitbeck Park was snapping in the wind. Seems the boats were moving well, a far cry from two weeks ago when it looked like they did not race. What made it so interesting is that before we made it to Breitback Park for the concert we stopped at Rudy's for some food. We could see the boats out on the lake racing. As we sat enjoying our meal a small tractor came down the road with a small sailboat on a trailer behind it. As the waves were running around 3 feet, we did not think much about it until we saw them back the trailer down to the shore. The shore at Rudy's is pretty rocky. They, as it turned out, 3 guys and a girl, around 20 years old, launched the boat with some difficulty. They got it turned into the waves and jumped aboard. From the "FJ" on the sail I took it to be a Flying Junior. Two guys paddled into the waves, as one guy attempted to attach the rudder. With the boat pitching in 3 footers, lining up the rudder was quite a task. The girl was trying to raise the main and jib. This was one of those events where you say "I can't watch, but I can't turn away". The two guys kept paddeling, keeping the boat mostly into the waves. It was then I noticed only 1 of the 4 had a visible life jacket on. The rest may have had them on under their shirts, but I only saw the one guy wearing one. Finally the rudder was attached, and by now the boat was east of where they put in. The main was only 1/2 raised, as it was jammed in the sail track on the mast from the force of the wind and trying to be raised. The Jib, which had been raised was lowered, as, by heading into the wind it had wrapped around the mast. When I last saw the boat it was still going east, two guys paddleing their arms off, one on the leeward side of the boat half under the boom and sail. The whole event was sureal to me. I don't think I would have ventured out in the winds we had in such a small boat, and how they did not end up capsized or on the rocks is beyond me. I certainly hope they were able to get the main raised and were able to enjoy a sail, but with the waves, which were to point where they were starting to break, it must have been an exciting night for them, it was for me, and I was on shore.


New Member
I was searching for someone who also had a Petrel 12 and found your entry. We have a Petrel SB 12, and are wondering where to get spare parts for it. I think we will need new drain plugs next year, and various other bits will need replacing in the coming years. We are in NY but sail the Petrel up in Canada each summer. Any hints about where to get the drain plugs (not sure if these are a standard sailboat item) or other Petrel parts for a 12 would be really useful. many thanks
Thread starter #47
A cool rain is falling, earlier than they forcast, so maybe I should not have mowed the lawn this morning and should have gone for a short sail. short as in the days of sailinf this season are getting fewer and fewer. Rainy days are a good day to reflect, reflect on the days that you could have sailed and did not, Wednesdays spent at Oswego's (NY) Breitbeck park listening to concerts and watching the Oswego Yacht Clubs races. Noticed that they seemed to have more "drifter's " this year than normal. Looked like they abandoned the races on a couple Wednesdays, maybe not, but they sure seemed to have a couple of real flat days.
To say that the plan to sail the Petrel did not go well would be an understatement. I can take some pride in the fact that she is sailable, got most of the work done I needed to do. Got some refinishing to do on the wood cap of the centerboard trunk, still tring to decide if I should try to refinish or replace. Don't think I have the tools to do the cutting and routering need to replace. Maybe justg take it off and take it to a place that does woodwork.
The masthead sleve work fine, never got around to getting the numbers and logo adhered to the sail. Maybe this winter I can cut some new ones from Insigna cloth. No loco sailmaker wants to sell ( they claim they have none) me any insigna cloth.
Raing harder...tomorrow looks good, but Grandson's 1st birthday is Saturday, so I am sure I'll be busy with preps for that. Biggestg priblem with the Petrel is finding a saining partner.. now iin how many yearsw will he be ready? And by then will I be able??
Guess I should think about getting myself in shape, and the boat will take care of iteself
Thread starter #48
Well, early April and time to think about summer sailing. Last year was a complete waste. The big plans for sailing the Petrel did not materalize, so do I still hold to that or do I accept realality and put the Sunfish back on the trailer when I head north? Looking at the Sunfish, she needs a little work, but the beauty of the 'fish is that they are pretty indestructable and most of the work is cosmetic. I think my 'fish is a '67, and it seems they were built like a tank, plus, I have never pushed her to the limit. (although, a couple of times I had to question my sanity for being out sailing in some pretty good winds). That is the benefit of being a 'recreational' sailor. Having painted the bottom aa couple years ago, she could use some light sanding and a new finish coat of paint there. That would make her look a lot better from a distance. Not sure how the deck looks, as she is 'bottoms up' on 4X4's now. Up close she bears the scars of the lower spar on her deck, but really no need to tend to those.
Wish I could get my kids interested in sailing her, but they have there own interests, and sailing is not high on their lists. Grandson is not yet 2, so he is a little young to start. Two years ago was a good sailing year for me, sailed the sunfish a lot, maybe that is where I will go. Have to make that decision, as the Petrel is on the trailer, and she is a bear to get off the trailer, and worse to get back on. Oh, decisions! I guess I am lucky that I have a while to decide.
Anyway, it is good to be thinking about sailing, that means that summer must be on it's way. It has been a long winter.
Thread starter #49
Pretty much opened up for the summer. Been an awful week of weather, feeling for those caught up in the tornado's in the south.
Here on Lake Ontario this year is a direct opposite of last spring. Last year we had warm and dry weather, this year, wet and cold. The ground is so saturated if you stop walking you are standing in water. Little Sodus Bay looks up a little, last year the level was low. Today the wind is howling and the bay is covered with white caps. Docks should put in withn the next two weeks it the weather warms and water gets stable then it will be a decision as to which boat to bring up. Forecast calls for rain for the beginning of next week. We are the only ones at the RV Park right now, this weather has put everyone behind.
Saw in a post that someone plans on sailing his wooden Sunfish on Sodus Bay this summer. Short trip from here, maybe I'll head over and see if I catch a glimps of her. Sodus Bay is a big bay, so might be hard to spot, although with the large boat on the bay, a Sunfish should stand out. I remember when O forst started sailing there were Sunfish's everywhere, now, I think there may be 1 or 2 out on Little Sodus on a regular basis. Not many board boats actually, mostly larger (22'-30') boats and a few smaller sloops, like O'Day Daysailors. Well, things to do, so stow the sailing thoughts for a while.
Thread starter #50
Heading back up to Lake Ontario today. Looks like the rain has stopped for a while, as the sun is out today. Last time I was up to the camp the water level was high, a far cry from last year, when it was very low in the spring. Wonder if we will be able to get all 4 sections of dock in. No boats are going up this trip. Still deciding if the Sunfish will go or the Petrel. I have some time, as the water temp has to come up before I will venture out. One of the benefits of being a recreational sailor, no time frame to worry about. Wish there were more Siunfish on the bay, always more fun to sail when others are out. One other person in the campground was given (yes, given, as in free) a Sunfish 3 years ago. Not bad condition. They tried to sail it a few times and gave up. Now they have Kayacs. Say the Sunfish was not 'exciting' enough. My daughter has a two person Kayac, and it is fun to take out, but I never found it as exciting as the Sunfish. I guess to each his own. Always get a lot of satisfaction to be able to plan a couse on the Sunfish and reach my destination in due time. Running in a stiff breeze brings a sense of 'thrill', as does reaching through the wake of a powerboat. I guess I miss sailing more than I would like to think. Time to get serious about it again.
Thread starter #51
June 17th, water is still high, Sunfish skid is still on shore, boat is still on trailer, trailer is back home. What a spring this has been. Very wet, high winds and high water level. Have not seen many, if any sailboats out on the bay. This year seems to never gotten started. Just got back to the RV park after being home for a couple of weeks. We got hit by the storm that went through the Southeren Tier of NY on Thursday before Memorial Day. We were up at the RV when we got the call we had damage at home. Compared to what has gone on in the South, we were very lucky, but we lost the top of one big Oak and it landed on our deck, taking out the deck railing and the Pergola roof on the deck. We had a second Oak uprooted, that hitting our neighbor's house, damaging his deck. Power was out from Thursday until Sunday. We have been at home, not at camp, putting things there back together. Finally got a crew to grind the uprooted tree stump. The tree, when it went over left a hole 3 feet deep, 12 feet wide in the backyard. After is was ground out we had to get topsoil in and reseed it. Got the deck back to a safe condition and now we are back to the RV trying to catch up on things here. Power boat is not in the water yet. Maybe a good thing. The man I share a dock with had his boat washed off his lift during a storm here, bending his prop. What has been so strange about this year is that the normally wind, from the North-West has never materialized. We have been having winds from the South-West. They say a South-West wind brings no good here, and they are right.
Well, hope the water drops so I can get in and put the skid in, and then I can think about putting the boat in. Not sure what the water temp is. Beach opens up tomorrow at Fair Haven Beach State Park, maybe I'll walk down to see how many venture in.
Thread starter #52
Wow, where does time go? I have not been on the website in years, maybe 4. Been out of sailing about that long. Sunfish and Petrel sit in the backyard, unused. Still hope one of the kids want to sail, but they show no real interest. Seems everyone wanted to sail when I began....55 years ago. If you had a sailboat you had it made.
Stopped sailing after the 'incident'. Seems some either don't know the nautical rules or just don't care. While reaching across the bay almost got cut in half by a returing charter fishing boat. Maybe he was in a hurry, might have had another charter booked at the dock, or he just did not like sailboats. At any rate, my 14footer was not going to be any match for his 22 footer. He could have beared off under me, but he held his course and I could not bear behind him, so it was a very quick tack. There were other factors, mainly the lack of other small sailboats out, but that probably was the biggest. It just seemed like a lack of respect for me and my craft. Seems like a lot of the 'sportsmanship' has left the boating population as a whole. Seemed in the past all boaters respected each other, often with a wave and a smile. I guess the bay I am on is a 'fishing' bay. They used to have regattas every Wednesday in the summer, but have not had any in the last several years.

Ventured to Dorchester Park in Whitney Point (best little village by a damsite)last week. Remember the days when the lake was filled with sailboats. Only one lone sunfish was out and the wind was, well, very 'fresh'. Great sailing wind, true, steady and enough to fly a flag straight off the flagpole. The lone 'fish spent the time reaching back and forth, never venturing more than 50 yards north or south of the launch site. Not the way I liked to sail, I was a 'pointer". Loved the way the waves sprayed up as the boat pointed up, but I know some like the feeling of the strain as the boat heels over. A second sailor ventured out. I suspect he had little experence at sailing, as he rented the sunfish and made a rather quick trip across the lake, got in irons trying to turn her (never came close to heading into the wind before tacking) and came back, after drifting bacwards and finally coming about, and traded the sunfish for a kayac.
I'm new to the forum and have enjoyed browsing through your saga. A few weeks ago we were at our family's cabin in northern MN when I noticed the old 1969 Sunfish I learned to sail in 40 years ago, lying under a cedar tree with her hull overgrown with moss and lichens. I made the promise to myself and her that I would not let her die like that so I manhandled her into the water and pulled her over close to our dock where I could haul her from the water...the first water she'd been in for at least 10-15 years. On that trip north I managed to get the moss and mildew removed and brought the daggerboard, rudder & tiller home to Iowa where I cleaned them up and applied a half dozen coats of marine polyurethane. Last week I took up a power buffer and cleaned and polished the hull with Maguire's Marine Cleaner/Polish and dug the old rigging out of the back of the garage. The sail had a few holes, one eyebolt was missing as was the bronze pin for attaching the rudder, but I McGiver'd up a temporary fix and took her out for my first sail in 15 years, after rechristening her "Promises Kept". I brought the rigging home this time and have a new sail, eyebolts, S-hooks, and rudder pin on their way to me in the mail. By the time we go north again, I should have everything back into decent shape and may even have a dolly so I can get her over into the garage for proper winter storage. We're both enjoying the restoration and the sailing.
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Thread starter #54
Wednesday morning was quite a morning on Little Sodus Bay (Fair Haven Bay). The cold front rolled through Tuesday night and brought a North wind, which produce 3'rollers down the bay. With the high water levels, the bay is 11centimeters above the 2014 July average, waves were running over the shoreline. Standing on the dock I could see the waves breaking over the wall separating Lake Ontario from the bay. The power of Mother Nature was evident.
I always loved the feel of the wind when sailing. Guess that is why I am a 'pointer", just loving the feel of the wind on the face and on the boat.
Seems like there is some renewed interest in sailing on the bay. Have not seen any regattas. Miss the Wednesday night J24s. Did see what looked like a sailing class of youngsters in their Opti prams.
A few more boats are on the bay, smaller daysailers. Always have had the fixed keel boats in decent numbers, but the centerboarders seemed to have dwindled in recent years.
Saw a "Puffer" for sale on the side road on the way to the camp. I remember them from my sailing says. It looked in great shape, bright yellow!! Price was reasonable, but the boat looked smaller than I remember. Hull looked very shallow. Still long for an O'Day Daysailer. That would be my "last boat" if given the choice. Sunfish still sits at home, as does the Petrel. Time for the Comet to be retired. Did see some life in the Comet Class, but looks like they have left NY and are now back to NJ. Did see an old picture of Comets at the truckstop where they want to put the new Casino in Tyre. Picture looked like it was from the 50's when Comets cut the waters of the Finger Lakes. Think some Comets were made in Skaneateles and maybe McPherson made some in Ithaca. I know McPherson sailed one. In the hayday there were Comet regattas on Cayuga, Coneous (sp) and at the Willow Bank Yacht Club. What a beautiful boat the Comet was, all had built wood.
Enough babbling, tomorrow brings another day.
Thread starter #55
September 12, 2016-where has the time gone. Been over a year since I have been on the forum. Seems like it was just yesterday.
Sad to say, the Comet is gone. The upkeep on the wooden boat was just to much- I could not give her the time she deserved. Noticed the mast was getting to a point where it should have been replaced, and finding a 'bendy' replacement was not in the cards. Having to re-rig the boat for a 3 stay, giving up the 8 stay, which was I loved about the boat, was more than I wanted to do.
So, my winter plans involve getting the Sunfish out (Sunfish don't get old, they just get better!!) and see if I can get her in shape. The old faded red deck needs at least a painting. Maybe check out the bottom and see what I can do. It's not a racing boat, so not a lot to do, it is (or was when I last sailed her) solid. Definitely need to re-varnish the centerboard and rudder. First chore will be to clean out the garage to have room to work.
Well, fall has always been a great time to sail. Wind on Little Sodus Bay has been steady, although a bit to strong for my liking at my age, so enjoy what time we have this season. Fair winds!!
Thread starter #56
Today was a beautiful day on Little Sodus Bay. The wind was light, but steady and not shifting. A great day to be on the water. As I went around the bay I was amazed by the number of sailboats in the water, amazed because I seldom see any out in the bay. There are a fair amount at FairPoint marina, maybe they go out on Lake Ontario. they sure have the size for it. I also saw a good number of 'bay boats', nice sized for the bay, but seldom see them out. It is sad to think that people are not interested in sailing the small centerboard boat any more. Oh well, just an observation.
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Thread starter #57
Seems like the water level on Little Sodus Bay is hit a low early this year. By observation it is about 8" under last Septembers average. We are at last year's mid-October level now. Looking back at a post I made on October 1st, 2009, water is at the same place. Low!!
There was a nice breeze today,mid-day, out of the south. Seems most of the breezes have been out of the south. Makes sailing a bit tricky. Start with a light south wind, get going nicely, enjoying the day and the 'sea breeze' kicks in, shifting the breeze to out of the north, not a strong breeze, so the two fight it out for rights to the bay. One small sloop rigged boat had the right idea, reach back and forth, so, north wind or south, you are still on a reach, just don't get into a spot where the breeze is shifting.
Weather forecast says cold this weekend, temps in the low 60's. After the hot summer, it will feel really cool. Today was another day in the 80's. Humidity was running high. Hope everyone in upstate NY can stretch the season for a few more weeks. This season seemed to slip away, to many days that it was just to hot to want to be out on the water, days you wanted to be in the water, to many warm southern breezes.